United States Naval Academy

Outstanding Educational Program

Questions and Answers

Provide a detailed description of the educational program and the population it served. Details MUST include: date of event/time-period, number of participants, program purpose (goals, objectives, etc.), use of resources (finances, community support, etc.), marketing techniques and evaluation processes.

The VAMC at USNA is unique in that our educational program aims to professionally develop our club members into leaders prepared for the military by tying in our culture and values. We had several events built around supporting the student body in becoming a well-rounded leader such as: 

Once a month we host a Wellness/Identity/Culture student-faculty meeting. This was aimed at the Asian Pacific community within our school, both student and faculty, to come together and talk about those topics. Combining with the Asian Pacific faculty members provided opportunities for informal mentorship. It created a safe space for conversations about how our culture affects our lives as the minority among the majority in the military and how our culture brings us strength. The activity for the 18MARCH 1900-2000 meeting was the Myers Briggs personality test and how we can optimize our personality strengths. on April 8 from 1900-2000 they planned to focus on Psychologist Dawn Morgan’s talk on “Becoming your best and most Authentic Self”. April 27 from 1900-2000 was planned to be a culture festival in anticipation of May’s Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. With 93% of Midshipmen students identifying as non-asian, it is an important educational opportunity to educate our classmates about our culture and heritage while also educating each other on what we identify with. 

On March 28 at 1100 we took 10 female midshipmen to the 7th annual NNOA Ladies Luncheon. This provided an opportunity to meet strong female role models who have paved the path for females in the working industries, and network with other military females and hear the challenges they’re facing or have overcome. The focus is on female empowerment and educating young female leaders on the possibilities open to them and military career options 

Educating our members about military career opportunities held important as we hosted several Aviation/Strike fighter pilot like November’s talk with CDR Bowens. 

How did this educational program serve the campus and/or community? What motivated the organization to host the educational program?

It served our campus by providing opportunities for mentorship and networking, which is essentially to a successful career. We provided an inclusive environment that was welcome to everybody to experience our educational programs. Upon graduation, we will set out to proudly serve our country as leaders in the Navy or Marine Corp. That is why our educational programs are far-reaching within our school, not just our club members, aimed at professional development to graduate the most capable leaders possible. Our club is passionate about our mission to provide inclusive events to optimize the learning value achieved from hearing great speakers, learning from the strife of others, while utilizing our culture to enhance the empathetic communication skills within us. It served our faculty by allowing them an avenue to share their valuable life lessons to the younger generation and cultivate a natural and informal mentorship.

How did the organization overcome any challenges that arose while planning and implementing the educational program? What was the outcome of the program in terms of goals met, successes, and failures?

The biggest challenge was creating events that would benefit our club members and community as a whole. With a school so small, it is hard to encourage involvement out of people’s busy schedules. Our club is small, but our participation percentage is committed to excellence. By considering what conversation topics would best benefit our audience, Midshipmen set on the path towards a military career, we provided an emphasis on mentorship and networking. These two things are integral to a successful career. The benefits of being able to lean on someone for advice or to receive life lessons learned by a role model is an integral aspect of coming to the educational programs we provide. By knowing our target audience, we meet our goals of delivering professional development opportunities to our community. Our failures are met with lessons learned and we use them to motivate our drive and outreach to create bigger and better events for our people.

What specific topics did this program address? What questions did it answer? How do you evaluate its success, both qualitatively and quantitatively?

The topics addressed are wellness, identity, and culture. Our club aims to educate the brigade of Midshipmen on what the Vietnamese American culture is about while allowing a safe space for Vietnamese Midshipmen to come together and celebrate our identity. The curriculum is aimed towards the majority, but with only 7% Asian American students, our club fosters an inclusive environment so that no matter what 

race you identify with, you are welcome to the professional development opportunities we provide. The speakers and networking educational events we host are monumental. Being able to learn life lessons from someone who has been through it before is invaluable. We answered questions about how to use your identity and culture to strengthen your leadership abilities. We answer questions about how to lead and serve our country as a minority among people who identify with the majority. We answered tough questions about race and the challenges it brings. We answered the hard questions that are uncomfortable but necessary. When you look around and see no one that looks like you, it’s hard to reach out for help. Our program lends aid in providing answers to those who ask. We evaluate the success by the development in individuals. Our success comes from knowing that we are setting them up for leadership success. We measure our success by knowing our members are capable of serving our country and will be confident in themselves and thus confident in the field. 

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